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The New Zealand Special Service Medal (Nuclear Testing)

Obverse View

The New Zealand Special Service Medal (Nuclear Testing) obverse view

Reverse View

The New Zealand Special Service Medal (Nuclear Testing) reverse view

About the New Zealand Special Service Medal (Nuclear Testing)

The New Zealand Special Service Medal was instituted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2002 to recognise personnel who undertook special operations which are not normally recognised by a Campaign medal. The Royal Warrant allows for a number of variants of the award, and to date, three New Zealand Special Service Medals have been struck: the NZSSM (Nuclear Testing) (images shown above), the NZSSM (Asian Tsunami), and the NZSSM (Erebus).

The NZSSM (Nuclear Testing) recognises the service of those personnel who were part of an official New Zealand Government presence at an atmospheric nuclear test between 1956 and 1973.  (Quick link to the dates and locations of the qualifying nuclear tests).

Since 2002, more than 670 persons have issued with the NZSSM (Nuclear Testing). Applications for this medal are still open. Please complete either NZDF Medals Office Form No. 1 (for your own medal) or Form No. 2 (for the medal of a deceased relative).

The award of the NZSSM does not qualify a recipient for the award of the New Zealand Operational Service Medal (NZOSM). The NZOSM is only awarded for service which involves a credible risk of casualties from enemy military forces or unlawful combatants. Service at atmospheric nuclear tests did not involve enemy military forces or unlawful combatants.

Engraving

The NZSSM (Nuclear Testing) was issued unengraved until 30 June 2009. From 1 July 2009 this medal has been issued engraved on the bottom rim. For military personnel, the recipient's service number, rank, initials, surname, and corps / Service are engraved. These details are as at the date of the service which qualified him or her for the medal.

Note: Recipients of an unengraved NZSSM (Nuclear Testing) should contact the Medals Office if they wish their medal to be engraved. The best opportunity to have your medal engraved is when you need to add another medal (such as the New Zealand Defence Service Medal) to your mounted medal group.

Royal Warrant

The Royal Warrant for the New Zealand Special Service Medal can be viewed here.

Medal Regulations

The Regulations for the New Zealand Special Service Medal (Nuclear Testing) can be viewed here.

Clasps and Bars

There are no clasps or bars for this medal.

Order of Wear

The position of this medal in the Wearing of Medals in New Zealand Table can be viewed here.

Media statement concerning the New Zealand Special Service Medal (Nuclear Testing)

18 March 2002 - Medallic Recognition for Nuclear Test Veterans

Naval Service which Qualify Persons for the NZSSM (Nuclear Testing)

How to apply

To apply for the NZSSM (Nuclear Testing) please complete either NZDF Medals Office Form No. 1 (for your own medal) or Form No. 2 (for the medal of a deceased relative).

Quick Link

All Medals Listed by RNZN Deployment 3 September 1945 to 2011